Kumbum Monastery called Ta'er Temple, is a Tibetan gompa in Huangzhong County, Qinghai, China. It was founded in 1583 in a narrow valley close to the village of Lusar in the historical Tibetan region of Amdo, its superior monastery is Drepung Monastery to the west of Lhasa. It is ranked in importance as second only to Lhasa. Alexandra David-Néel, the famous Belgian-French explorer who spent more than two years studying and translating Tibetan books at the monastery, said of it:he configuration of the surrounding mountain ranges arrested the passage of the clouds, forced them to turn around the rocky summit which supported the gompa forming a sea of white mist, with its waves beating silently against the cells of the monks, wreathing the wooded slopes and creating a thousand fanciful landscapes as they rolled by. Terrible hailstorms would break over the monastery, said the country folk, to the malignity of the demons who sought to disturb the peace of the saintly monks. We were taken first to the great kitchen where priests were brewing Tibetan tea in great copper cauldrons ten feet in diameter, beautifully chased with the Buddhist symbols.
The stoves were the usual mud affairs and the fuel nothing but straw, which younger lamas continually fed to the fire." Je Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism, was born in nearby Tsongkha in 1357. According to one tradition, Tsongkhapa's father took the afterbirth and buried it where the monastery is now and soon a sandalwood tree grew on the spot. Another version has it that the tree grew up where drops of blood from Tsongkhapa's umbilical cord had fallen on the ground. In any case this tree became known as the "Tree of Great Merit." The leaves and the bark of this tree were reputed to bear impressions of the Buddha's face and various mystic syllables and its blossoms were said to give off a peculiarly pleasing scent. The four-storied golden-roofed temple built around the tree where Tsongkhapa is said to have been born is called "Golden Tree" and is considered the holiest place at Kumbum. On the porch of the Golden Temple, pilgrims prostrate themselves one hundred times and the boards are worn into grooves where their feet and hands touch....
We were taken into one great temple capable of seating twenty-five hundred priests. The great pillars were covered with brilliantly woven rugs, skins of animals, the bright "pulo" cloth of the Tibetans, it was a mass of brilliant, garish colors and to my mind would have been wonderful in a more subdued light." This is the origin of Little Tower Temple. Two Catholic missionaries, Évariste Régis Huc and Joseph Gabet who arrived here in the 1840s when the tree was still living were prepared to dismiss "The Tree of Great Merit" as just another fanciful legend. We were filled with an absolute consternation of astonishment," Huc noted in his famous book Travels in Tartary, "at finding that, in point of fact, there were upon each of the leaves well-formed Tibetan characters... Our first impression was a suspicion of fraud on the part of the lamas. Section of this tree are now preserved in a stupa in the Great Golden Temple; the "Golden Tiled Temple" is revered throughout Mongolia. It is a small building with a roof of pure gold plate.
Inside, it is full of wonderful relics, great banners of silk brocade called "katas", wonderful lamps of gold and silver, thousands of small vessels burning butter, a colossal figure of Tsong Kapa, said to be made of gold. All is in semi-darkness which adds to the mystical effect, the gleam from the butter lamps threw into relief some beautifully wrought temple vessels, or the queer blank face of some saintly Buddha image." In the 1360s Tsongkhapa's mother, with the help of locals, had a small temple with a stupa built on the site of his birthplace. In 1560 the meditator Tsöndrü Gyeltsen built a small monastery there called Gonpalung for intensive meditation practice. At first, it soon expanded to hold fifteen. In 1576, Altan Khan of the Tümed Mongols invited the future 3rd Dalai Lama, Sönam Gyatso to bring Buddhism to Mongolia. After Altan Khan adopted Buddhism, he gave Sönam Gyatso the title Dalai Lama: Dalai is the Mongolian translation of the name Gyatso "ocean." On his way to meet Altan Khan near Qinghai Lake, the 3rd Dalai Lama stopped at the isolated retreat by the holy tree marking the spot where Tsongkhapa had been born.
He requested Tsöndrü Gyeltsen to construct a larger monastery at this site and appointed him as the head lama. The monastery was built in 1583 and a fence was erected around the "Tree of Great Merit". An annual Monlam Prayer Festival was inaugurated, like the one held in Lhasa; the new monastery was called Kumbum Jampa Ling. "Kumbum" means "100,000 enlightening bodies of the Buddha". It is named after the 100,000 images of Siṃhanāda which appear on the leaves of the holy sandalwood tree. "Jampa ling" means "Maitreya Cloister." This refers to the Maitreya temple built by Tsöndrü Gyeltsen to the right of the precious tree. The first Throne Holder of Kumbum was Düldzin Özer Gyatso. In 1603, the 4th Dalai Lama stopped at Kumbum on his way from his native Mongolia to Ü-Tsang. At that time, he proclaimed the need for a study division to be built and for Düldzin Özer Gyatso to be appointed as the head of the entire monastery. At Kumbum's Monlam of 1612, Düldzin Özer Gyatso first ascended to the throne of abbot and opened a debate college (Wylie: dpal ldan bshad grub gling g
5th Dalai Lama
Ngawang Lobsang Gyatso was the Fifth Dalai Lama, the first Dalai Lama to wield effective temporal and spiritual power over all Tibet. He is referred to as the Great Fifth, being a key religious and temporal leader of Tibetan Buddhism and Tibet. Gyatso is credited with unifying all Tibet after a Mongol military intervention which ended a protracted era of civil wars; as an independent head of state, he established diplomatic relations with China and other regional countries and met early European explorers. Gyatso wrote 24 volumes' worth of scholarly and religious works on a wide range of subjects. To understand the context within which the Dalai Lama institution came to hold temporal power in Tibet during the lifetime of the 5th, it may be helpful to review not just the early life of Lobsang Gyatso but the world into which he was born, as Künga Migyur; the child who would become the 5th Dalai Lama was born in the Chonggye Valley in Ü, south of the Yarlung Tsangpo River and about two days' journey south-east of Lhasa, to a prominent family of nobles with traditional ties to both Nyingma and Kagyu lineages.
The aristocratic Zahor family into which he was born had held their seat since the 14th century at Taktsé Castle, south of Lhasa – a legendary stronghold of Tibetan kings in the days of the early empire, before Songtsen Gampo had moved his capital from there to Lhasa. The 5th Dalai Lama's father was called Dudul Rabten, the local ruler of the Chonggye valley known as Hor Dudül Dorjé, his father had friendly relations with the Drugpa Kagyu and his mother had connections with the Jonangpa Kagyu through her family at Nakartse Dzong. Thus, after his birth on the 22nd day of the 9th month of the Fire-snake year, the most remarkable scholar and exponent of the Jonang school, named the child'Kün-ga Migyur Tobgyal Wanggi Gyalpo', his family called him'Künga Migyur'. The child's father, Dudul Rabten, was arrested in 1618 for his involvement in a plot to overthrow Karma Phuntsok Namgyal, leader of the Tsang hegemony. Karma Phuntsok's grandfather Zhingshak Tseten Dorje had been appointed Governor of Tsang by the Rinpung Prime Minister Ngawang Namgyel in 1548.
Tseten Dorje had rebelled against the heirs of Ngawang Namgyel starting in 1557 overthrowing the Rinpung and establishing the Tsang hegemony in 1565 by declaring himself King of Tsang. Tseten Dorje established his residence at Samdruptse castle called Shigatse, near the Gelug monastery of Tashilhunpo, together with his nine sons extended the reach of his power over both of Tibet's central provinces of Ü and Tsang; the secular government of King Tseten Dorje and his descendants enjoyed general support from the Sakya and Kagyu schools, while maintaining somewhat tense but cordial relations with his Gelug neighbours at Tashilhunpo. Altan Khan, King of the Tumed Mongols, invited Drepung Monastery's abbot Sonam Gyatso to Mongolia. In 1577–78 Sonam Gyatso accepted, went there and converted him and his subjects to Buddhism, receiving the Mongolian name "Dalai" in the process by which action his lineage became known as the "Dalai Lamas" and he became the 3rd Dalai Lama, his two predecessors became known as the 2nd Dalai Lamas posthumously.
The Samdruptse government saw this development as a politico-religious alliance between the Gelugpa and a foreign power. When Sonam Gyatso died, the Gelugpa recognised a Mongolian prince as his incarnation and so a Mongolian 4th Dalai Lama, Yonten Gyatso, was installed as the abbot of Drepung; this increased Mongolian involvement with the Gelugpa further and enabled more Mongolian intervention in Tibetan affairs. As a result, King Tseten Dorje's suspicions about Gelugpa ambitions rose and when in 1616 the 4th Dalai Lama died young, at the age of 28, in an attempt to defeat the process the King prohibited the Gelugpa monks from searching for his incarnation. Dudul Rabten's arrest occurred at the same time that his infant son had been recognized, in secret, by lamas of the Gelug order as the reincarnation of the 4th Dalai Lama, while Tashilhunpo's abbot Lobsang Chökyi Gyaltsen used diplomacy to persuade King Karma Phuntsok Namgyal to lift the ban he'd put in place on seeking out the 5th Dalai Lama.
Dudul Rabten tried to reach eastern Tibet, but was rearrested. Dudul Rabten died in captivity in 1626 at Samdruptse – Karma Phuntsok Namgyal's castle known as Shigatse – and thus, he never lived to see his son again; the young 5th Dalai Lama's family were ordered by Karma Phuntsok Namgyal to live at court in Samdruptse, but his mother, Kunga Lhanzi, fearing retribution from the king, returned with her son to her family's home, Narkatse castle, in Yardrog. The infant Künga Migyur's name had been drawn, by lot, from among the names of three children considered candidates in a series of divination rituals including a doughball divination, held in secret at Radeng monastery; the former 4th Dalai Lama's chief attendant, Sonam Choephel, is credited with having discovered the incarnation. While the Karma and Jonangpa Kagyu orders, had all independently sought to claim Künga Migyur as a reincarnation of one or another of their own lamas who'd died in 1616, young Künga Migyur's parents resisted their demands.
Lobsang Gyatso was the name which Künga Migyur received from Lobsang Chökyi Gyaltsen upon taking n
Tibetan Buddhism is the form of Buddhist doctrine and institutions named after the lands of Tibet, but found in the regions surrounding the Himalayas and much of Central Asia. It derives from the latest stages of Indian Buddhism and preserves "the Tantric status quo of eighth-century India." It has been spread outside of Tibet due to the Mongol power of the Yuan dynasty, founded by Kublai Khan, that ruled China. Tibetan Buddhism applies Tantric practices deity yoga, aspires to Buddhahood or the rainbow body. Tibetan Buddhism in Tibet has four major schools, namely Nyingma, Kagyu and Gelug; the Jonang is a smaller school, the Rimé movement is an eclectic movement involving the Sakya and Nyingma schools. Among the prominent proponents of Tibetan Buddhism are the Dalai Lama and Panchen Lama, the leaders of Gelug school in Tibet. Westerners unfamiliar with Tibetan Buddhism turned to China for an understanding. There the term used; the term was taken up by western scholars including Hegel, as early as 1822.
Insofar as it implies a discontinuity between Indian and Tibetan Buddhism, the term has been discredited. Another term, "Vajrayāna" is used mistakenly for Tibetan Buddhism. More it signifies a certain subset of practices included in, not only Tibetan Buddhism, but other forms of Buddhism as well; the native Tibetan term for all Buddhism is "doctrine of the internalists". In the west, the term "Indo-Tibetan Buddhism" has become current, in acknowledgement of its derivation from the latest stages of Buddhist development in northern India. Buddhism was formally introduced into Tibet during the Tibetan Empire. Sanskrit Buddhist scriptures from India were first translated into Tibetan under the reign of the Tibetan king Songtsän Gampo, In the 8th century King Trisong Detsen established it as the official religion of the state. Trisong Detsen invited Indian Buddhist scholars to his court, including Padmasambhāva and Śāntarakṣita ), who founded the Nyingma, The Ancient Ones, the oldest school of Tibetan Buddhism.
There was influence from the Sarvāstivādins from Kashmir to the southwest and Khotan to the northwest. Trisong Detsen invited the Chan master Moheyan to transmit the Dharma at Samye Monastery. According to Tibetan sources, Moheyan lost the socalled council of Lhasa, a debate sponsored by Trisong Detsen on the nature of emptiness with the Indian master Kamalaśīla, the king declared Kamalaśīlas philosophy should form the basis for Tibetan Buddhism. A reversal in Buddhist influence began under King Langdarma, his death was followed by the socalled Era of Fragmentation, a period of Tibetan history in the 9th and 10th centuries. During this era, the political centralization of the earlier Tibetan Empire collapsed; the late 10th and 11th century saw a revival of Buddhism in Tibet. Coinciding with the early discoveries of "hidden treasures", the 11th century saw a revival of Buddhist influence originating in the far east and far west of Tibet. In the west, Rinchen Zangpo founded temples and monasteries.
Prominent scholars and teachers were again invited from India. In 1042 Atiśa arrived in Tibet at the invitation of a west Tibetan king; this renowned exponent of the Pāla form of Buddhism from the Indian university of Vikramashila moved to central Tibet. There his chief disciple, Dromtonpa founded the Kadampa school of Tibetan Buddhism, under whose influence the New Translation schools of today evolved; the Sakya, the Grey Earth school, was founded by Khön Könchok Gyelpo, a disciple of the great Lotsawa, Drogmi Shākya. It is headed by the Sakya Trizin, traces its lineage to the mahasiddha Virūpa, represents the scholarly tradition. A renowned exponent, Sakya Pandita, was the great-grandson of Khön Könchok Gyelpo. Other seminal Indian teachers were his student Naropa; the Kagyu, the Lineage of the Word, is an oral tradition, much concerned with the experiential dimension of meditation. Its most famous exponent was an 11th-century mystic, it contains one major and one minor subsect. The first, the Dagpo Kagyu, encompasses those Kagyu schools that trace back to the Indian master Naropa via Marpa Lotsawa and Gampopa Tibetan Buddhism exerted a strong influence from the 11th century CE among the peoples of Inner Asia the Mongols.
The Mongols invaded Tibet in 1240 and 1244. The Mongols had annexed Kham to the east. Sakya Paṇḍita was appointed Viceroy of Central Tibet by the Mongol court in 1249. Tibet was incorporated into the Mongol Empire, retaining nominal power over religious and regional political affairs, while the Mongols managed a structural and administrative rule over the region, reinforced by the rare military intervention. Tibetan Buddhism was adopted as the de facto state religion by the Mongol Yuan dynasty, founded by Kublai Khan, whose capital is Xanadu. With the decline of the Yuan dynansty and the loose administration of the following Ming dynasty, Central Tibet was ruled by successive local families from the 14th to the 17th century, Tibet would gain de facto a high autonomy after the 14th century. Jangchub Gyaltsän became the strongest political family in the mid 14th century. During this period the reformist scholar Je Tso
Tsakaling Gewog is a gewog of Mongar District, Bhutan
This Holy Milerapa statue is Shrine in Nyanang Phelgyeling Monastery located Swoyambhu, Nepal.. Jetsun Milarepa was a Tibetan siddha, who famously was a murderer as a young man turned to Buddhism to become an accomplished buddha despite his past, he is considered as one of Tibet's most famous yogis and poets, serving as an example for the Buddhist life. He was a student of Marpa Lotsawa, a major figure in the history of the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism. Milarepa's life-story is famous in the Tibetan culture, retold many times; the best-known biography, The Life of Milarepa, written by Tsangnyön Heruka in the fifteenth century and drawing from older biographies, is still popular. Most of the present-day stories on Milarepa come from this single source. While "very little about him as a historical person at all," Milarepa is venerated by all Tibetan schools "as an exemplar of religious dedication and mastery," and his lifestory established the lineage of the Kagyu sect and its key figures. According to The Life of Milarepa, Milarepa was born in western Tibet to a prosperous family.
When his father died, his family was deprived of their wealth by his uncle. At his mother's request, Milarepa left home and studied sorcery to take revenge, killing many people, he felt sorrow about his deeds, became student of Marpa the Translator. Before Marpa would teach Milarepa, he had him undergo abuse and trials, such as letting him build and demolish three towers in turn. Milarepa was asked to build one final multi-story tower by Marpa at Lhodrag. Marpa accepted him, explaining that the trials were a means to purify Milarepa's negative karma. Marpa transmitted Tantric initiations and instructions to Milarepa, including tummo, the "aural transmissions", mahamudra. Marpa told Milarepa to practice solitary meditation in caves and mountain retreats, according to the biography, after many years of practice resulted in "a deep experiential realization about the true nature of reality." Thereafter he lived as a realized yogi, even forgave his aunt, who caused the misfortune of his family. According to Lopez, The Life of Milarepa represents "Buddhism as it was understood and practiced in Tibet in the fifteenth century, projected back in time," and contains "many of the key terms and doctrines of Buddhism."
Tsangnyön Heruka did his best to establish a lineage of teachers which connects the Kagyu tradition with the Indian siddha tradition, portraying Marpa as a student of Naropa, though Naropa had died when Marpa went to India. Lopez notes that Tsangnyön Heruka used stylistic elements from the biography of Gautama Buddha to portray Milarepa as a Tibetan Buddha, "born and enlightened in Tibet, without going to India or receiving the direct instructions of an Indian master." The lifestory of Milarepa portrays "the rapid method of the Tantric path,"in which liberation is gained in one lifetime. It describes how Milarepa practiced the generation stage and completion stage, to achieve mahamudra, "spontaneous realization of the most profound nature of mind." Yet, in his instructions to his Tibetan audiences, Milarepa refers to the basic Buddhist teachings of "impermanence, the sufferings of saṃsāra, the certainty of death and the uncertainty of its arrival, the frightful rebirth, the direct result of our benighted deeds."
But, his own life is an example that a murderer can transform into a Buddha. Lopez further notes that The Life of Milarepa portrays two parallel worlds, a profane world and a sacred world, which are one, showing that the world itself is sacred. Previous biographies of Milarepa were enlarged with religious poetry and song cycles, which doubled the volume of biographical information. Tsangnyön Heruka published these songs in a separate volume as The Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa, summarizing the various song cycles in chapter eleven of The Life of Milarepa. Milarepa lived during the so-called second dissemination of Buddhism in Tibet, when Buddhism was re-introduced. Three pivotal figures in this Tibetan Renaissance were Rinchen Zangpo, who translated sutras and commentaries. Marpa introduced tantric texts and oral instructions from the Bengali siddha tradition into Tibet, Marpa's purported connection with Naropa established the lineage of the Kaguy school, thereby reaching back to the Buddha himself.
Machig Labdrön Milarepa's Cave Detachment Kaihōgyō Shugendō Éliane Radigue BiographyThe Life of Milarepa, translated by Lobsang P. Lhalungpa, Book Faith India, 1997, ISBN 81-7303-046-4 The Life of Milarepa, translated by Andrew Quintman, Penguin Classics, 2010, ISBN 978-0-14-310622-7 The Yogin and the Madman: Reading the Biographical Corpus of Tibet's Great Saint Milarepa, by Andrew Quintman. New York: Columbia University Press, 2013. ISBN 978-0-231-16415-3Songs of MilarepaThe Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa: A New Translation,Tsangnyön Heruka. Boulder, Shambhala, 2017. ISBN 9781559394482 OCLC 946987421 Milarepa, The Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa, translated by Garma C. C. Chang, City Lights Books, 1999, ISBN 1-57062-476-3 A Reader's Guide to Milarepa Biography on Kagyu website The sixty songs of Milarepa Text, The Essential Songs of Milarepa in English Inviting the demon. Judith Simmer-Brown, Parabola